Book Cover

Visualizing Posthuman Conservation in the Age of the Anthropocene

Amy D. Propen

6 x 9, 224 pp.
4 illustrations

Pub Date: September, 2018

Subjects: Rhetoric & Communication
American Studies

Series: New Directions in Rhetoric and Materiality

Order Paperback$32.95   ISBN: 978-0-8142-5492-9
order Hardcover $59.95   ISBN: 978-0-8142-1377-3
Order PDF ebook $29.95   ISBN: 978-0-8142-7646-4

“Propen develops a posthuman conservation ethic by adapting feminist theory and posthumanism to a web of subgenres of rhetorical approaches, acknowledging the power of the ambient, sensorial, affective, visual, and material. The confluence of theory coalesces in this book to produce an engaging rhetorical intervention into the environmental humanities.… Visualizing PosthumanConservation in the Age of the Anthropocene opens an interdisciplinary dialog, creating space for a necessary engagement with the Anthropocene that should be welcome by any rhetorician interested in the discourse surrounding visualization practices and environmental conservation discourse.” —Katherine D. Lind, Rhetoric Society Quarterly

Yale Climate Connections blog: “Books about Life in the Anthropocene”

“In her forward-looking, engaging, and accessible book, Amy Propen makes it clear that we urgently need an ethic centered on respect and compassion for, and kinship with, other animals. Personal rewilding and compassionate conservation can lead the way.” —Marc Bekoff, author of Rewilding Our Hearts and The Animals' Agenda

“Rather than illustrating existing paradigms, Amy Propen is out to change them. Visualizing Posthuman Conservation will be influential in rhetorical studies and circles of posthumanist analysis because of its ambitious scope and the deliberate, rigorous certainty with which Propen applies theory to objects of analysis.” —Marguerite Helmers

“I can offer no higher praise than to say that Visualizing Posthuman Conservation is a breakthrough not only in theory but in human consciousness.” —Steven B. Katz

How do we understand the lives of nonhuman animals and our relationship with and responsibilities to them? What are the artifacts or things that help configure such perceived responsibility? And what does it mean to practice conservation in the Anthropocene? Amy D. Propen seeks to answer these questions in Visualizing Posthuman Conservation in the Age of the Anthropocene, which brings a visual-material rhetorical approach into conversation with material feminisms and environmental humanities to describe how technologies, environments, bodies, and matter work together to shape and reshape how we coexist with our nonhuman kin.

Through case studies in which visual technologies and science play a prominent role in arguments to protect threatened marine species—from photographs showing the impact of ocean plastics on vulnerable sea birds, to debates about seismic testing and its impact on marine species, to maps created from GPS tracking projects—Propen advances a notion of posthuman environmental conservation that decenters the human enough to consider ideas about the material world from the vantage point of the nonhuman animal. In so bringing together work in environmental humanities, animal studies, human geography, and visual-material rhetoric, Propen further shows how interdisciplinary ways of knowing can further shape and illuminate our various lived and embodied experiences.

Amy D. Propen is Assistant Professor of Writing at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and author of Locating Visual-Material Rhetorics: The Map, the Mill, and the GPS.



Preface    The Scrub Jay and the Peanut

Chapter 1    Agential Entanglements and the Paradoxes of Anthropocene Technoscience

Chapter 2    Material Rhetoric in the Midway

Chapter 3    Seismic Risks and Vulnerable Bodies

Chapter 4    Tracking to Sea (in the Anthropo-scene)

Chapter 5    Conclusion


Works Cited


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